Airbus is demanding answers from the German government following media reports that it helped the U.S. National Security Agency spy on the company.
The aviation group, based in France, said it would file a criminal complaint about suspected industrial espionage in an attempt to force an explanation from Berlin.
“After all this reporting, with no clarification, it’s time to file that application for investigation in order to find out what happened,” said Airbus () Group CEO Tom Enders on CNN’s Quest Means Business.
“We have heard nothing from the German government so far, so there are plenty of questions…we are asking for a normal thing — for clarification and investigation.”
Earlier this week, Germany’s Bild newspaper reported that U.S. spy agencies had targeted Airbus and other companies for years, and that the German government had been aware of it since 2008.
Germany’s Süddeutsche Zeitung said that the NSA had used a German intelligence service listening post to spy on European countries for more than a decade. It said the main targets were senior officials in the French foreign ministry, the office of the French president, and the European Commission. Some companies were also targeted, it said.
The new claims of cooperation with the U.S. in spying activities are putting pressure on the German government, which has for years characterized itself as a victim of snooping. In 2013, the U.S. came under fire for allegedly tapping German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s phone.